Insomnia is a frustrating and very worrying problem that affects a great number of people of all ages. Lack of sleep is not healthy, and further health problems can occur in those who find it difficult to get to sleep. There are a number of pharmacological options that you can take – and your doctor will advise you on the best of these – but for many people, taking drugs is not a chosen route. What is the alternative?
It’s safe to say that while there is no actual ‘cure’ for insomnia, there are methods and items that can help sufferers sleep: the one we are talking about today is the weighted blanket. It may seem odd that a blanket with weights fixed within its covers can help people sleep, but there has been plenty of research into the subject. Clinical tests have found that weighted blankets do help people sleep in the majority of cases, so why is this, and should you be using one?
Struggling with insomnia? Weighted blankets provide the ‘grounding’ that helps deal with anxious situations, in the form of actual physical comfort.
How Do Weighted Blankets Work?
The concept of the weighted blanket is not new, and came about as a result of a proven therapeutic routine that is known as deep pressure stimulation. This method involves the pressing of hands onto the body with the aim of getting the nervous system to reduce stress levels, which are a common cause of insomnia.
Our bodies produce a hormone called cortisol. This is also known as the ‘stress hormone’. Deep pressure stimulation has been shown to reduce the production of cortisol, thus lowering the stress level. The idea behind the weighted blanket is that as it places a constant weight across the body evenly, it has the same effect. Bear in mind that this therapy is also known to increase the production of serotonin – the ‘happy hormone’ – and you can see why it will help with insomnia.
Weighted blankets come in a variety of sizes, and also in different weights. You can read more about this at TruHugs, a supplier with a range of quality weighted blankets that are very popular. The weight is provided by small weights that are contained in the blanket, and a blanket can add anywhere from 5lb to 30lb in weight.
Further reasons why a weighted blanket is beneficial to insomniacs – and also, as it happens, for those suffering anxiety, depression, and for children on the autistic spectrum or who suffer ADHD – are that it provides the ‘grounding’ that helps deal with anxious situations, in the form of actual physical comfort.
Are There Risks with Weighted Blankets?
The weighted blanket is a genuine non-pharmacological aid to insomnia, as well as the other problems we have mentioned, and is also reported as beneficial by users who suffer chronic pain. The one warning that comes with them is that they should not be used with children who are two years or under, as there are obvious dangers.
Choose a blanket that is around 1/10th of your body weight – if you fall in-between when looking at a range choose the heavier one – and try it, as many people have with success.
Have you used weighted blankets to help with insomnia?
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